Fellows

Yaakov Katz

Bio

Yaakov Katz is an Israeli-American author and journalist. Between 2016 and 2023, Yaakov was editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post where he continues to write a popular weekly column. He is the author of three books - “Shadow Strike – Inside Israel’s Secret Mission to Eliminate Syrian Nuclear Power”, “Weapon Wizards - How Israel Became a High-Tech Military Superpower” and “Israel vs. Iran: The Shadow War”. Shadow Strike was recently adapted into a docudrama by Reshet Media and his books have been published in a number of languages including English, Hebrew, Czech, Polish, Japanese and Mandarin. His next book – tentatively titled “Precision Strike” – is scheduled for publication by St. Martin’s Press in the Spring of 2025. Yaakov served for close to a decade as the paper's military reporter and defense analyst and was a lecturer at Harvard University where he taught an advanced course in journalism. He also served as Israel correspondent for Jane’s Defence Weekly. Prior to taking up the role of editor-in-chief, Yaakov served for two years as a senior policy adviser to Naftali Bennett during his tenure as Israel’s Minister of Economy and Minister of Diaspora Affairs. In 2013, Yaakov was one of 12 international fellows to spend a year at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Originally from Chicago, Yaakov has a law degree from Bar Ilan University.

Articles by Yaakov Katz

Israel is outraged at ‘absurd’ ICC, but for the rest of the world, it’s totally logical

Why Israel Can’t Count Solely on Its Missile Defenses

Keeping Israel Jewish without Politics

Israel’s Intelligence Agencies and Military Need More Civilian Oversight

A More Accurate Accounting of the War in Gaza

Israel does not have a culture of accountability

Change needs to come to Israel’s post October 7 state

A Brief Window for Israel to Integrate Its Arab and Jewish Communities

The War in Gaza May End Soon, but Not the Fighting

When the war in Gaza stops, the political war in Israel will begin

Has Israel already lost the war with Hezbollah?

What’s the End Game for Gaza? Netanyahu Must Spell It Out

Three Options for Israel to End the War in Gaza

Israel is on a Collision Course with the US

Fighting for your career instead of against Hamas

Iran Pays No Price for Bad Behavior

The IDF Reservists Fighting in Gaza Will Fight Netanyahu After the War

Israel-Hamas war isn’t just about security, it’s about Jewish peoplehood

Attacks on Israel are only the beginning. All democracies are at risk

Even After the War in Gaza, Israel Will Have to Hunt Down Hamas’ Leaders

Qatar needs to expel Hamas leaders and if not, America should do it for them

If Biden Wants to Stop a Wider War, He Should Ready a Strike on Iran

Resetting the Military’s Approach to Gaza

Stuck between a rock and a hard place, what is Israel to do?

This Is a Pearl Harbor Moment for Israel

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Dr. Nadia Beider

Bio

Nadia Beider holds a PhD in Contemporary Jewry from the Hebrew University, where she was a Mandel Scholion doctoral fellow. She is currently a Rothschild Foundation Hanadiv Europe postdoctoral fellow at University College London. She teaches Jewish Education at the Hebrew University and has worked as a demographer at the Claims Conference.

 

Articles by Dr. Nadia Beider

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Dr. Dov Maimon

Senior Fellow

Bio

Senior Fellow at JPPI, Dov Maimon leads the "Grand Strategy toward Islam" project, the "Israel-Diaspora New Paradigm" project and the Institute's activities in Europe. Among his action-oriented work, he is a member of the Advisory Committee for Improving access to Ultra-Orthodox to Higher Education chaired by Professor Manuel Trajtenberg. He is also the author of the Action Plan for bringing the developing mass migration of French Jews to Israel. Commissioned by governmental agencies, the plan was adopted by the Israeli Cabinet on June 22nd 2014. Born in Paris, he earned a B.Sc. from the Technion (Haifa, Israel), a MBA from Insead (Fontainebleau, France), a M.A in Religious Anthropology and a Ph.D. in Islamic and Medieval Studies from the Sorbonne University. He is a laureate of the prestigious prize "Grand Prix du chancelier des universites 2005" awarded to the best French PhD work in Literature and Human Sciences. He is also a graduat of the Mandel School of Educational Leadership. Formerly an High-Tech industry entrepreneur, Dov is teaching at the School of Business Administration of the Ben Gurion University.

Articles by Dr. Dov Maimon

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Retired Justice Elyakim Rubinstein

Bio

Served as Vice President of Israel’s Supreme Court, Attorney General, and Government Secretary, and participated in peace negotiations with Israel’s neighbors. After retirement, Rubinstein was appointed Associate Professor in the parallel track of the Department of Political Science and the Federman School of Public Policy and Government at the Hebrew University. Served, and continues to serve, as chair and member of several public bodies (including the Public Committee on IDF Orphans, the Council for Combating Racism in the Ministry of Justice, the Public Defender's Committee) and civil society organizations (for example, the Council for the Preservation of Historic Sites (Chair), Kav Mashve – Developing Employment Leadership in Israeli Arab Society, and Round-Up). Rubinstein is a Co-Chair of JPPI’s Thin Constitution project.
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Prof. Yonathan Givati

Bio

We are happy to announce that Prof. Yehonatan Givati has joined the Institute as a senior fellow. Givati completed both his PhD in economics and his Doctorate in law (SJD) at Harvard and is a professor of law at Hebrew University. He is the founding director of the Aumann-Fischer Center for Law, Economics, and Public Policy at Hebrew University and a member of the Center for the Study of Rationality, also at Hebrew University. Givati will head JPPI’s “Israel-Diaspora Index” project.

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Dr. Yehuda Yifrah

Bio

Investigative journalist, legal commentator for the Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon, and a lawyer specializing in commercial and civil litigation at the Shalem & Kerem law firm. Yifrah holds bachelor’s degrees in law and education, and master’s and doctoral degrees in Jewish philosophy.
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Jason Pearlman

Bio

Jason is the JPPI spokesperson for foreign media. As a foreign media liaison and speechwriter, Jason has experience working with the Office of the President of Israel under both President Isaac Herzog and former president Reuven Rivlin, former Prime Minister Naftali Bennett as Education Minister and Minister for Diaspora Affairs, former Justice Minister Gideon Saar, Mayor of Jerusalem Moshe Lion, and others.

He has over 20 years of experience working with the international media based in Israel and has helped manage the coverage for some of the largest scale events to have taken place in the country; including the visits of two Popes, six visits of US Presidents and Vice Presidents, dozens of other heads of state, as well as for the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz held at Yad Vashem in 2019. He has also consulted for major international brands including Facebook and Mars.

Jason holds a BA in Politics and Social Policy from Brunel University. Originally from Sunderland in the North-East of England, he lives in Modi’in with his three sons.

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Shmuel Rosner

Senior Fellow

Bio

Shmuel Rosner is a researcher, editor and columnist. He is the editor of the "THE MADAD" project, for politics, society, identity and culture in Israel and serves as a television commentator for Kan News.

Rosner was the editor-in-chief of the non-fiction books in Kinneret-Zamora-Dvir from 2009 to 2021. He was a columnist for the New York Times newspaper from 2012 to 202. He was the head of the news department at Haaretz (1996 to 2008). He is a sought-after lecturer on Israeli politics, security, and policy; the state of the Jewish people; American history, politics, and policy.

Articles by Shmuel Rosner

Hamastan, Fatahstan, Realistan

The price tag that comes with Biden’s trip to Israel

How I Got Israel Wrong

Israel is dodging the ultra-Orthodox question

Pluralism Index 2023: Israelis Want a Democratic and Jewish State

WHO IS A JEW? VIEWPOINTS OF ISRAELI JEWS

The new Israeli officials seeking to redefine Jewish identity

Should Moral Considerations be Brought to Bear in Foreign and Security Policy? Attitudes of Israeli Jews

Shared Spaces, Challenging Spaces: What the findings of JPPI’s 2022 Pluralism Index survey reveal

The 2021 Arab Israeli Riots and their Consequences

The Jewish Camp of the Nine Percent

The 2021 Israel Pluralism Index: Consensus and Disagreements

Israeli Election: Initial Lessons

The Diaspora Jewish Community, Post-Pandemic: Trends and Recommendations

2020 Pluralism Index

2020 JPPI Pluralism Index: Digital Event

Answer our survey and see where you land on the map of Israeli Judaism

70 Years of Israel-Diaspora Relations: The Next Generation

70 Years of Israel-Diaspora Relations: the Next Generation

Jerusalem and the Jewish People: Unity and Division

Jerusalem and the Jewish People: Unity and Division – Interim Report

2017 Pluralism in Israel Index

Exploring the Jewish Spectrum in a Time of Fluid Identity

Jewish Values and Israel’s Use of Force in Armed Conflict: Perspectives from World Jewry

Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State

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Prof. Yaffa Zilbershats

Bio

Professor of law specializing in international law, constitutional law, human rights and migration law, served as Dean of the Faculty of Law at Bar-Ilan University, and Vice President of the university. She has served on several public committees in Israel, including the Committee to Appoint a Deputy Attorney General, the Committee for Preparation of Citizenship Legislation, the Rubinstein Policy Review Committee for Immigration to the State of Israel, and the Neeman Committee for Completing a Draft Constitution for Israel. From 2015 to 2021, Prof. Zilbershats chaired the Planning and Budgeting Committee at the Council for Higher Education (CHE), where she led the implementation of the Six-Year Plan for Higher Education in Israel. She has served as a member of the International Board of the Weizmann Institute of Science since 2022, and as of 2023, as the Academic Chair of Yeshiva University in Israel.
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Noa Israeli

Research Fellow

Bio

Noa Israeli is the coordinator of the academic course "Israeli Identity: Divided We Stand." She is a PhD student at the School of Jewish Studies at Tel Aviv University, and a graduate of the Israel Democracy Institute's Human Rights and Judaism Program. Israeli is the Director of the Scholarships Program for Outstanding Teaching Students at Tel Aviv University, and lecturer in the Regav program at the Kibbutzim Seminar. She lives in Tel Aviv and is the mother of two daughters.
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Eliran Carsenti

Bio

Eliran Carsenti is JPPI's digital assets manager and editor of the Institute's website. Over the last decade, he has worked as a reporter, editor, and manager at several prominent media organizations. He has a bachelor's degree in economics and communications from Ariel University, a master's degree in law from Bar Ilan University, and he is a graduate of a campaign management program at the New-Media college.

Articles by Eliran Carsenti

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Dr. Haim Zicherman

Bio

Dr. Haim Zicherman, a senior lecturer at the Ono Academic College (OAC), is an expert in constitutional and property law and also researches the ultra-Orthodox society. His book Black Blue-White (Yedioth Books, 2014) takes a broad-minded approach to understanding the ultra-Orthodox society in Israel. Until last year, Zicherman managed the ultra-Orthodox campuses of the OAC, where thousands of Haredi students – male and female – study. In recent years, Zicherman has coordinated the development and management of the "Israeli Identity" course available to all undergraduate students in Israel.
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Rivka Ravitz

Senior Fellow

Bio

Rivka Ravitz studied business administration and computer science and received her MBA in Information Systems. She is currently working on a doctorate in public policy at the University of Haifa. Her research at JPPI addresses the empowerment of Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) women in the labor market. Ravitz served as Chief of Staff to the 10th President of the State of Israel, Mr. Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin. She is a member of Israel’s Haredi community and lectures on various topics.

Articles by Rivka Ravitz

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Prof. Ariel Bendor

Bio

Ariel L. Bendor is Frank Church Professor of Legal Research at the Faculty of Law and Dean of School of Graduate Studies, Bar-Ilan University. He holds an LL.B. (cum laude) and an LL.D. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has been a professor or visiting scholar at Yale, Osgood Hall, and Maryland law schools. He served as a member of the appointments committee of Bar-Ilan University and as chairman of the Israeli Association of Public Law. He serves as the head of the Center for Media and the Law and of the publishing house of the Faculty of Law. Before joining Bar-Ilan in 2008, he was on the faculty at the University of Haifa (1992-2008), where he served as Dean of Law, Dean of Students, and member of the Board of Directives at the University of Haifa. He served in a number of public committees, including the Advisory Committee for Examination of Israel's Policy of Immigration, a team to examine the policy of issuing gag orders, and the search committee for the State Attorney. His main expertise includes constitutional law, administrative law, and substantive and procedural criminal law. He has written three scholarly books and about 80 academic articles published in law reviews and books in Israel and abroad. He has edited two books as well as the Hebrew University Law Review and the University of Haifa Law & Government Journal, and was the Editor in Chief of the University of Haifa Press.

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Prof. Michal Bar-Asher Siegal

Bio

Prof. Michal Bar-Asher Siegal is a scholar of rabbinic Judaism. Her work focuses on aspects of Jewish-Christian interactions in the ancient world, and compares early Christian and rabbinic sources. She is a faculty member at the Goldstein-Goren Department of Jewish Thought, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and she was an elected member of the Israel Young Academy of Sciences. She was the Horace Goldsmith Visiting Professor in Judaic Studies at Yale University and the Gruss Visiting Associate Professor in Talmudic Civil Law Harvard Law School. Her first book is Early Christian Monastic Literature and the Babylonian Talmud (Cambridge University Press, 2013; winner of the 2014 Manfred Lautenschlaeger Award). Her second book is Jewish-Christian Dialogues on Scripture in Late Antiquity: Heretic Narratives of the Babylonian Talmud (Cambridge University Press, 2019; finalist, National Jewish Book Award, 2019).

   
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Noah Slepkov

Chief Technology Officer

Bio

Noah Slepkov is a fellow and chief technology officer at JPPI and he is lead developer and managing partner at theMadad.com. At JPPI he is focused on public opinion surveys and big data research. Previously he served as Foreign Policy and Strategic Advisor to Member of Knesset Dr. Einat Wilf and worked in the Israeli Knesset as a Parliamentary Assistant. Noah holds an Honors BA in Jewish Studies from York University and an MA in Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution from the Lauder School of Government at the IDC Herzliya. He also studied Economics at the University of Toronto and Political Science at the University of Western Ontario. Prior to immigrating to Israel from Canada in 2008, Noah worked on campuses across Canada organizing Jewish student events and leading Israel advocacy efforts.

Articles by Noah Slepkov

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Dr. Elad Gil

Bio

Senior Fellow and Head of Research at the Tachlith Institute for Israeli Policy. He holds a doctorate (S.J.D.) in law from Duke University, a bachelor's degree in law and a master's degree in business administration from the Hebrew University, as well as a master’s degree in law from American University in Washington, which he attended as the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship. In addition to his position at the Tachlith Institute, Dr. Gil serves as a researcher at Hebrew University’s Federmann Cybersecurity Research Center, lecturer at the Radzyner School of Law at Reichman University, and visiting researcher in Duke University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship program. His research interests include constitutional and administrative law, theory of separation of government branches, and law and technology. In 2023, he served as a special adviser to the negotiation management team regarding the judicial reform on behalf of Beit HaNassi (the President's Residence).
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Dana Fahn Luzon

Fellow

Bio

Dana has a B.A. in Communication and Economics from Tel Aviv University, a B.A. in Psychology from the Open University, and an M.A. in Social and Political Psychology from the University of Jerusalem. Graduated from the army from unit 8200 after learning five units of Arabic.

Dana is a reporter, content creator, media and communication personality, previously hosted a morning show on Channel 2, served the World Cup show as a news presenter, created a television series abroad about breaking stereotypes on women. She worked as a creator, producer and reporter for the digital newspaper "Israel Hayom", and for the past two years has written a socio-political column at “Walla”, dealing the current social issues in the complex Israeli reality. Dana serves as a guest lecturer at the Peres Academic College as part of a crisis management course.

Articles by Dana Fahn Luzon

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Avi Gil

Senior Fellow

Bio

Ambassador Avi Gil Served as the Director General of Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs from April 2001-November 2002. He also served as Director-General of Israel's Ministry of Regional Cooperation, Deputy Director-General of the Peres Center for Peace; the Prime Minister's Chief of Staff, Media Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Finance, and Executive Policy Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs. He has been closely involved in Israel's policy-making and peace efforts, including the negotiations that led to the Oslo Accords and the peace treaty with Jordan. He is a Senior Fellow at the JPPPI and a was a close advisor to President Shimon Peres.

Articles by Avi Gil

What happens when Israel’s military and government arms aren’t shaking hands?

Is the chief of staff qualified to understand Sinwar?

Ben-Gvir is food for the Palestinians

Netanyahu cannot risk losing America’s affection

Containing Hamas is a bad but legitimate strategy

Getting upset with the world is not a strategy

Now is the time for sketching out a new political horizon

Israel may soon experience a political shock amid Gaza war

The real ‘conceptzia’ is endless occupation

The logic of Peres

The Saudi Plan of Shimon Peres

The National Intelligence Estimate under a predatory right-wing government

Killing jihad commanders amplifies an illusion

Will the National Security Council fulfill their duty?

Gaps between Israel and the Diaspora are expected to grow

Foreign Minister Eli Cohen – Set Up a Meeting with the CEO of J Street Israel

When the government believes its own slogans the country’s in trouble

The 2022 Annual Assessment

Palestinian Weakness is a Curse for Israel, Not a Blessing

The Evolving World Order: Implications for Israel and the Jewish People

The Future of the Current World Order: Implications for Israel and the Jewish People

The Geopolitical Landscape – Growing Uncertainty in light of the Trump Presidency

Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State

2030: Alternative Futures for the Jewish People

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Dr. Nurit Cohen

Bio

Dr. Nurit Cohen has joined JPPI as part of the "Jewish Peoplehood" project team. Dr. Cohen is a historian and curator of historical exhibitions. Her book, based on her doctoral thesis, Jewish Refugees in the War of Independence won the Yitzhak Sadeh Prize for Military Literature. In the past, she has held key positions in several major media organizations.

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Retired Judge Raanan Giladi

Bio

A Jewish People Policy Institute senior fellow, who is part of the management team of the Thin Constitution project. Giladi has served as a magistrate court judge in Israel's Southern District. He was a legal assistant to the late Supreme Court Deputy President Eliahu Mazza, and an intern of former Supreme Court Deputy President Shlomo Levin. Giladi was in charge of the professional team of the State's Committee of Inquiry on the Treatment of the Evacuees from the 2005 Gaza Disengagement. He has also served as a Senior Manager of Administrative Law Division in the National Public Defender's Office; a lawyer in the High Court of Justice (Bagatz) Department in the Office of the Attorney General; the Executive Director of the Clinical Law Programs at Tel Aviv University; and a Board Member at the Bar Association's Lawyers Training Institute. He has published several articles on the interface between public law and criminal law.

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Dr. Robert Neufeld

Bio

Dr. Robert Neufeld is an expert in international law, International Humanitarian law, Security law, Military law and Emergency law. Robert served in numerous positions in the IDF's Military Advocate General Corps and the Military Ombudsman, including Commander of the IDF’s School of Military Law, Head of the Operational Law Branch in the IDF International Law Department, Legal Advisor to the Israel Air Force, Israel Navy and IDF Home Front Command, Chief Regional Military Prosecutor, Judge Advocate for the Israel Air Force, Legal Advisor to the Intelligence Directorate and Legal Advisor to the Technology and Logistics Directorate. Today, Robert serves as a legal consultant in the fields of emergency law, counter terrorism, combating BDS and antisemitism. In 2022, Robert served as an expert on behalf of the Council of Europe to the Ukraine Parliament and the Supreme Court on improving the remote hearings legal framework and practice under martial law or state of emergency in Ukraine in line with Human Rights standards and principles.

Robert holds an LLB as well as LLM (Magna cum Laude) from Tel Aviv University, and a PhD from the University of Haifa. His PhD work - "The Impact of political motives on the legality of actions in current warfare under International Humanitarian Law" has examined the adaptability of International Humanitarian Law to modern warfare, current military thought and military doctrines, and the growing political aspects of the use of force. His Post-Doc research, together with Prof. Eli Salzberger, has examined the regulatory framework of the Israeli emergency laws.

Articles by Dr. Robert Neufeld

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Eyal Yinon

Bio

Jurist. Served as Legal Adviser to the Knesset and as Knesset Secretary. Yinon holds a bachelor's degree in law from Tel Aviv University and a master’s degree in public policy from the Hebrew University.
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Ghila Amati

Bio

Ghila Amati, who grew up in Italy and currently resides in Jerusalem, is a doctoral student at the University of Oxford in the Department of Theology and Religion. In 2022, she was a visiting scholar at the Rosenzweig Minerva Research Center at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel. Additionally, she has served as a Research Fellow at the Judaism and Human Rights Program at the Israel Democracy Institute in Jerusalem. Ghila has been the recipient of various grants and fellowships, including the MFJC Fellowship Grant for Doctoral Students and the Doctoral Fellowship for Academic Jewish Studies awarded by the Rothschild Foundation Hanadiv Europe. She has also worked as a research analyst for the European Academy of Religion and Society (EARS).

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Dr. Alona Hagay-Frey

Bio

Dr. Hagay-Frey is a teaching fellow at Bar-Ilan University and the Open University.  She holds a bachelor's degree (with honors) in law and business administration from Reichman University, a master's degree (with honors) in public law from Tel Aviv University, and earned her PhD at Bar-Ilan University. She won several awards, including the Raoul Wallenberg Prize for Human Rights. Her book Sex and Gender Crimes in the New International Law: Past, Present, Future was published by Brill | Nijhoff. Dr. Hagay-Frey is part of JPPI’s  “Thin Constitution” team.

Articles by Dr. Alona Hagay-Frey

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Prof. Gil Troy

Bio

A Distinguished Scholar in North American History at McGill University currently living in Jerusalem, Gil Troy is an award-winning American presidential historian and a leading Zionist activist. He is, the editor of the new three-volume set, “Theodor Herzl: Zionist Writings,” the inaugural publication of The Library of the Jewish People. Two years ago he co-authored with Natan Sharansky Never Alone: Prison, Politics and My People, was published by PublicAffairs of Hachette. Recently designated one of Algemeiner's J-100, one of the top 100 people "positively influencing Jewish life,".

Articles by Prof. Gil Troy

Harassed students should study in Israel

Israel needs leaders like Joe Lieberman

Forget two states, let’s try a two-democracy solution

Beware of Dangerous Advice: An Urgent Letter to President Biden

Rabbis not supporting the war against Hamas are acting irresponsibly

American policymakers have ideological blinders on

Israel’s Gaza war is self-defense, no apologies needed

How Palestine Hijacked the U.S. Civil Rights Movement

Opinion: Netanyahu is not Sinwar but must go home

Can Zionism Save Academia?

Idan Amedi for Prime Minister of Israel

Returning to sites of the massacre, hard yet necessary

Trust Me, You’d Rather Live in a Pro-Israel America

Non-Jews should lead the fight against Jew hatred

Zionism: Still helping Jews save themselves

Israel stopped apologizing on October 7

Why, Once Again, Israel Will Survive

Our Failed Colleges: Time to Get Radical

Israel maintains moral clarity amid smog of Gaza war on Jihad

The Next Generation of Israelis:  We need your Tonal Zionism

Remembering David Ellenson, a Reform rabbi and Religious Zionist

Where are the righteous Palestinians?

All Israelis are hostages

It’s Time for Professors Who Support Israel to Proclaim their Zionism – the Toronto Way

Palestinians can stop the war by overthrowing Hamas

The Nine Big Lies Against Israel and What They Really Mean

Harvard must fight educational malpractice, not just antisemitism

Attacks on Israel are only the beginning. All democracies are at risk

Iran is no mere adversary, it is America’s mortal enemy

Feminists Are Consenting to Hamas’ Rape Culture

American Jews Need to Reexamine their Blinding ‘Conzeptzia Too’

Why Benjamin Netanyahu should vow to retire

Civilization is not a suicide pact

Students, it’s time to find your courage and confront Hamas apologists on campus

Israeli Soldiers Die Because Its Military Is So Moral; How to Fight the Next War

Silence of the tenured lambs

Palestinian Culture is Morally Bankrupt

The Many Ways American Jews Can Help

Amid the shock and horror, the nation stands together with moral clarity and resolve

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Yael Ribner

Bio

Yael Ribner is the Director of External Affairs at the Jewish People Policy Institute. She worked in the International Relations Division at Yad Vashem for 15 years, leaving in 2022 as the Deputy Director. She studied Communications and Political Science at Bar Ilan University. She is an active lay leader on several community initiatives that focus on Social Justice, Jewish Identity and Israel.

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Dr. John Ruskay

Senior Fellow

Bio

John S. Ruskay came to UJA-Federation in 1993 and held several positions before being appointed Executive Vice President and CEO in October 1999, serving in this role until July 2014. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh in 1968, Dr. Ruskay earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science at Columbia University. He served as Educational Director of the 92nd Street Y from 1980 to 1985, and Vice Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America from 1985 to 1993. Dr. Ruskay has written extensively and speaks nationally on how the American Jewish community can most effectively respond to the challenges and opportunities of living in an open society; the critical role of Jewish philanthropy; and the central role of community. He has served as a senior consultant to the Wexner Foundation and The Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, and has chaired the Publication Committee of the Journal of Jewish Communal Service and the Professional Advisory Committee of the Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program. Dr. Ruskay has received numerous honors, including the Bernard Reisman Award for Professional Excellence from Brandeis University's Hornstein Program, the Mandelkorn Distinguished Service Award from the Jewish Communal Service Association of North America, and honorary doctorates from the Jewish Theological Seminary (2011), Hebrew Union College (2103), and Yeshiva University (2014). The Ruskay Institute for Jewish Professional Leadership is being established to provide in-service professional enrichment for the next generation of communal leaders. Dr. Ruskay is married to Robin Bernstein; together they have five children and seven grandchildren.

Articles by Dr. John Ruskay

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Prof. Keren Weinshall-Margel

Bio

Edward Silver Professor of Civil Procedure at Hebrew University. Prof. Weinshall-Margel was Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Law at Hebrew University until 2021, and a member of the Israel Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities. She is a researcher in the field of empirical law in Israel, and a former Founding Director of the Israeli Judicial Authority.
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Samuel J Hyde

Bio

Samuel Hyde is a writer and researcher who began his career in the research department of contemporary antisemitism at the Cape Town Holocaust and Genocide Centre. He is known for his editorial work on former Knesset member Dr. Einat Wilf's latest book, "We Should All Be Zionists." Samuel has worked at various think tanks and research institutes across Israel, South Africa, and the United States, including the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance. His work is frequently published in Newsweek, Haaretz, Fathom Journal, The Jerusalem Report, and the Jewish Journal.

Articles by Samuel J Hyde

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Dr. Shlomo Fischer

Senior Fellow

Bio

Dr. Shlomo Fischer teaches sociology in the School of Education at Hebrew University and at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.He is also currently a research fellow at the Van Leer Institute. His research interests include the nexus of religion, politics and class in Israel, contemporary religion and the sociology of the Jewish people. He has published extensively on radical religious Zionism and the West Bank settlers as well as on the Shas movement. Fischer has worked in the field of education for the past 25 years. In the past 10 years he has worked in the field of religion, democracy and tolerance. He has edited (together with Adam Seligman) The Burden of Tolerance: Religious Traditions and the Challenge of Pluralism (Hebrew; HaKibbutz Hameuchad and the Van Leer Institute, 2007) which addresses these issues. From 1996-2007 he was the founder and Executive Director of Yesodot – Center for Torah and Democracy which works to advance education for democracy in the State-Religious school sector in Israel and was also one of the founders and is on the Board of the International Summer School for Religion and Public Life which is based in Boston, Mass. He is a graduate of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership in Jerusalem.

Articles by Dr. Shlomo Fischer

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Dr. Rachel Fish

Bio

Rachel Fish is the co-founder of Boundless, a think-action tank partnering with community leaders to revitalize Israel education and take bold collective action to combat Jew-hatred.

Dr. Fish has 20 years of academic experience in the fields of Israeli history, Zionist thought, and Middle Eastern Studies. Currently, Dr. Fish holds a position of Visiting Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at George Washington University’s Graduate School.

She was the Founding Executive Director of the Foundation to Combat Antisemitism, served as Senior Adviser and Resident Scholar of Jewish/Israel Philanthropy at the Paul E. Singer Foundation, and was Executive Director at the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University.

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Dr. Shalom Salomon Wald

Senior Fellow

Bio

S.Wald was born in 1936 in Milan, Italy. He grew up in Basel, Switzerland where he studied social sciences, history, and history of religions, graduating in 1962 as Ph.D. In 1964 he joined the Paris-based OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) where he stayed until his retirement in 2001. His career spanned education, technological innovation, science and technology policy, energy research policy and biotechnology policy. He was Head of the OECD/DSTI Biotechnology Unit. He joined the JPPPI in 2002 and worked on Jewish/Israeli relations with China; science and technology; and the history of Jewish civilization. Currently he reviews India-Israel-Jewish People links. Three Reports written for JPPPI: - China and the Jewish People – Old Civilizations in a New Era, Jerusalem 2004. - “Science and Technology and the Jewish People”, JPPPI Annual Assessment 2005, Jerusalem 2005. - Jewish Civilization at the Crossroads – Lessons from the History of Rise and Decline, to appear in 2010. Three Research Papers written outside JPPPI: - “China and Israel”, Encyclopedia Judaica, Second Edition, ed. Fred Skolnik, Vol. 4, Farmington Hills, 2007. - “The ‘Confucianisation’ of the Jewish Community of Kaifeng: Jewish and Non-Jewish Historical Perspectives”, The Jews in Asia – Comparative Perspectives, ed. Pan Guang, Center of Jewish Studies Shanghai, The Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, 2007. - “Chinese Jews in European Thought”, Youtai – Presence and Perception of Jews and Judaism in China, ed. Peter Kupfer, FASK, Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, ed. Peter Lang, Frankfurt am Main, 2008.

Articles by Dr. Shalom Salomon Wald

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Barry Geltman

Fellow

Bio

Barry Geltman is JPPI’s longtime English language editor. He joined the Institute in 2008 as part of the steering committee of the inaugural Facing Tomorrow Conference, a cornerstone of the presidency of Shimon Peres. He divides his professional time between JPPI and the URJ Heller High School in Israel, where he teaches an American literature seminar and works to strengthen the emotional attachment of Reform youth to Israel. Geltman worked as an independent producer in television and film before making Aliyah in 2003. He is a Yale alumnus and lives in Jerusalem.

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Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn

Bio

Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn is currently Visiting Professor at the Ruderman Program in American Jewish Studies and Senior Researcher at the Comper Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism and Racism at the University of Haifa. She is also a '22-'24 inaugural fellow at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Center for Antisemitism Research and a fellow at the Jewish People Policy Institute. She was previously appointed as the Visiting Assistant Professor in Israel Studies at Northwestern University (2018-2022) and the University Research Lecturer in Israel Studies at the University of Oxford (2013-2018). Her research, teaching, and public engagement activities focus on Diaspora-Israel relations, the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, and the Israeli Ultranationalist Movement. Her first book, City on a Hilltop: American Jews and the Israeli Settler Movement (Harvard, 2017), was the winner of the 2018 Sami Rohr Prize in Jewish Literature Choice Award and a finalist for the 2017 National Jewish Book Award. She is currently working on a new manuscript entitled "New Day in Babylon and Jerusalem: Zionism, Jewish Power, and Identity Politics Since 1967," that will offer a transnational history of the post-Six Day War period. Apart from her academic work, Dr. Hirschhorn is an internationally-recognized public speaker, writer, educator, media commentator, and consultant on contemporary Jewish/Israel affairs.
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Udit Corinaldi-Sirkis

Bio

Served until recently as the Legal Adviser to the President of the State of Israel, and Director of the Legal Office, Pardons Department, and the Department of Public Inquiries and Community Relations at the President's Residence. In this position, she attended the negotiations on the judicial reform, which were conducted last year under the auspices of President Herzog. Prior to this, she worked as a senior attorney for the High Court of Justice, and before that as a prosecutor in the Jerusalem District. She was a lecturer in the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University. Corinaldi-Sirkis holds a bachelor's degree in law, and master's degrees in law and in criminology (cum laude), and is a graduate of the Mandel School for Social and Educational Leadership. She is involved in dialogue processes between identity groups in Israeli society held in the framework of the President's Residence, as well as in the civil society sector.
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Amit Shoval

Bio

Amit holds a BA in Economics and Amirim Honors program in the Humanities at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Engaged in economic research and large-scale data analysis within the research department of the JGive. A unit 8200 alumnus with a broad background in Middle East affairs. Under the guidance of Prof. Yonatan Givati, responsible for estimating the Israel-Diaspora Index using quantitative methods and relying on economic theory.

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Jude (Yehuda) Taragin

Bio

Jude is a research assistant for several projects at the institute, alongside completing his master's in neuroscience, following his work at the S. Horowitz law firm.

Jude holds of a BEd in history, Jewish studies and education from Herzog College, as well an LLM and BA from the "Amirim" program of the Faculty of Humanities of Hebrew University.

During his studies, he interned at the Ministry of Justice and at a private law firm, worked as a teaching assitanst and research assistant at several organizations (Hebrew University, Tel Aviv University, the Israel Democracy Institute). Jude also worked as an intern at the philanthropic Foundation, "Yad Hanadiv", as well as at OECD (during his studies at Sciences-Po, Paris).

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Lipaz Rotkovsky

Bio

Lipaz Rotkovsky works in the consulting and legislation department at the Ministry of Justice, and is a teaching assistant in the Faculty of Law at Tel Aviv University. Lipaz has a bachelor's degree in law and a master's degree (with honors) in law with a specialization in commercial-civil law. She is the coordinator of  JPPI’s online course "Israeli Identity – Divided We Stand."

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Shlomi Bereznik

Bio

Shlomi Bereznik was a  soldier from unit 8200 where he served as a Data Scientist. Shlomi is a graduate of a bachelor's degree in data and information engineering at the Technion (data science). During his degree, he won second place in the "Developments at the Technion" competition for his work "Dealing with incitement terrorism on the Internet and its consequences", which dealt with a proposal for a way to deal with thwarting the individual threat.

 Shlomi is interested in artificial intelligence, Judaism, the heritage of the people of Israel and the nature of the Land of Israel.
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Eli Kannai

Bio

Eli Kannai holds a B.Sc. in Computer Sciences from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, with a focus on Mathematics and Jewish Philosophy. He served as Director of The Snunit Center for Web-Based Learning, a leading e-learning and information architecture organization in Israel. From 2000 to 2002, Eli worked with a private Israeli startup in the field of Knowledge Management. From 2002 to 2019, he held the position of Chief Educational Technology Officer at The AVI CHAI Foundation, operating in Israel, North America, and the FSU. There, he played a pivotal role in the development of large content websites, led online and blended learning initiatives, and contributed to various technology-related projects. Currently, Eli works as an independent consultant specializing in digital strategy and educational technology.

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Yosef Keshet

Bio

Yosef Graduated with a bachelor's degree in mathematics and computer relations and a master's degree in information systems and finance from Tel Aviv University Yosef is a data scientist, data analyst, His position at the institute is collecting and concentrating information from various sources, making it accessible to the institute's researchers and analyzing it with advanced AI methods
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